Despair from the GOP

“A lot of people are not turned on because they don’t see a lot of bright spots out there. Home prices are going down. Gas prices are going up. And the war keeps dragging on.”

I’m cheerful about our chances next year.

However, since I’m almost always cheerful about our chances, that doesn’t mean much

But when Mickey Edwards, who’s only cheerful when the other guys win, thinks our chances next year are good, then maybe there’s reason to be cheerful about our chances next year.

In any case, this makes pleasant reading:

Republicans around the country said the war was only one of the challenges facing Mr. McCain and the other candidates. Rick Beltram, a Republican county leader in Spartanburg, S.C., said that he found evidence of Republican despair as he sought to organize support for all the candidates as they visit his state, one of the most important in the Republican nominating process.

“I would say a lot of people are not turned on because they don’t see a lot of bright spots out there,” Mr. Beltram said. “Home prices are going down. Gas prices are going up. And the war keeps dragging on.

(Emphasis added.)

Wouldn’t that make a great ten-second spot? An ordinary citizen looks at the camera and says, “Home prices are going down, gas prices are going up, and the war keeps dragging on. We need new leadership.” If we can keep the voters’ minds focused on that as we go into ’08, as opposed to Obama’s childhood thumb-sucking, we ought to do just fine.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com